Monday, 3 May 2010

The Kennet and Avon - Reading to Hungerford…..

Last Wednesday morning we turned onto the K & A.  The first part of the navigation left a lot to be desired, with locks in a dreadful condition – it seems BW ought to take a look at the first few miles!

SDC10709 Goodbye ‘Old Father Thames’

SDC10711 Hello K & A

SDC10715 Reading Town Centre was ‘interesting’ and ‘challenging’, there being a tremendous flow on the river part of the navigation.

We soon reached Southcote Lock, the first one with a number on

SDC10717 Only 103 to go – to Bristol!

We moored near Burford Mill, not far from Theale, and continued on to Woolhampton on Thursday, passing through Garston Lock, the last remaining turf-sided lock, and Sheffield Lock, which has scalloped sides .

SDC10720 Garston Lock

SDC10721Sheffield Lock

We had planned to moor at Aldermaston Wharf on Thursday, but despite there being a BW Visitor Centre, there were no visitor moorings that were for longer that 4 hours, and we needed to pick up son Russ and his fiancé Nat on Friday.

They duly arrived on Friday afternoon, and we set off on Saturday morning for Newbury.  Our surroundings were getting a bit prettier by now


SDC10726 Newbury Town centre


Sunday dawned with pouring rain, so we decided to hold off moving until the weather improved, which it did around lunch-time, so we left, heading for Kintbury, where we wanted to visit the Dundas Arms for dinner as it had been recommended by son-in-law Ben.  Unfortunately, they don’t open on Sundays! so it was bangers and mash on board instead.

SDC10730 Moored at Kintbury was a horse-drawn trip boat

We set off for Hungerford this morning, so Russ and Nat could catch a train back to Woolhampton to pick up their car.  It was a much better day weather-wise, and we had entertainment on the way, in the form of a home-made boat race.  There were some interesting interpretations of ‘boat’

SDC10733 Trying hard not to capsize


Whoops – almost!!


SDC10736 Despite having to proceed with care, we reached Hungerford in record time, had a little wander up the High Street, and then came back to the boat for lunch, after which, Russ and Nat packed up their stuff and left for the station.


SDC10742 Heading for home

It was lovely to see you both, thanks for coming all this way.

We are now at Hungerford until at least tomorrow lunchtime as the next few locks are padlocked closed – there is a large oak tree across the canal a couple of miles to the west, and this is the only decent mooring and winding hole to the east of the blockage, so we are here for the duration!

1 comment:

  1. Ahoy! Nb Windsong. We met you and Serenity at Aldermaston Lock on your way to Woolhampton. We loved your boats and will be following your blog.
    Tony & Louise


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